Happy Birthday Israel!
Today is the 60th Anniversary of Israel’s declaration of independence, proclaimed on this day in the Tel Aviv Museum in 1948.
Israel is a modern marvel – 1/4 the size of Tasmania, with almost 15 times the population – 7.3 million people consisting of various Jewish, Arab, Circassian and other ethnic groups.
It has the 33rd highest GDP per capita at $25,799 – just behind New Zealand and just ahead of South Korea.
Despite many challenges that include having limited natural resources, and having faced the constant threat of annihilation from its neighbours, it has maintained a Western Democratic, pluralistic and multicultural society, with freedom of the press and an independent judiciary.
Some of its long list of achievements include:
- 8 Nobel Laureates
- Prominent contributions to Arts, Medicine, Agriculture, Natural Sciences and IT
- A historic role in providing humanitarian aid to other countries
On this occasion, I take the chance to wish the people of Israel the best for the future. May they have the will and determination to deal with the challenges they face, and may they continue their excellent work in building their society and contributing to the world community.